Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Robber Bride by Jerrica Knight-Catania

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Obtained from: Kindle Loan
Read: Oct. 3, 2011 

When Victoria Barclay, privileged daughter of the Viscount Grantham, has a life-altering experience as a young girl, it sets the course for the rest of her life. She is determined to make a difference in the world, no matter the consequence, and becomes a highwayman—or woman, as it were—robbing the rich and donating her pilfered gains to the poor. Life-long friend and neighbor, Phineas Dartwell, Earl of Leyburn, suspects his dear friend is up to no good. She’s become evasive, and even worse, he cares that she’s become evasive. When she refuses to confide in him, claiming it’s for his own good, he severs the friendship out of wounded pride and a wounded heart. But when Victoria’s activities are brought to light in the eyes of the magistrate, Phineas must find a way to acquit his friend—and dare he hope, future wife?—of the charges.

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I love stories of women who defy traditional gender roles but novels of female highwaymen are a dime a dozen and a large portion of them aren't worth the time it takes to read the covers. After reading Celia Rees' Sovay, I've avoided these titles like the plague. Still, something about this novella said take a chance.

I was pleasantly surprised by The Robber Bride. The characters aren't as polished as I would like but they are charmingly appealing and witty. Almost from the 
first page, I found myself laughing out loud at the surprisingly anecdotes and dialogue.

Perhaps this is why I found the plot holes so disappointing. I'm still not clear on exactly how Lady Beecham came by her information nor do I quite understand how Finn was able to find so much support for Victoria when it was the very lack of compassion among her peers that led to her actions in the first place. I know it is a novella but that doesn't excuse loose ends. 

The Robber Bride is a sweet love story with just a hint of danger. Recommended light romance or beach read. 

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Sick was an interesting term to apply to Lady Hartswell. The woman was barely fifty years old, and the only sick thing about her was her mind. Never had Victoria met such a martyr. Her woe-is-me personality was pathetic. If she spent five minutes in this place, she'd realize what true suffering was.
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